Summary: Because of who Jesus is, we can be confident in our prayer!
I. Confidence In His Hearing 14
14 Now this is the confidence that we have in Him, that if we ask anything according to His will, He
A. Confidence In Jesus Built On His Promises.
1. I don’t think it coincidental that John would write this in his letter because he also wrote it in his gospel.
2. I also believe that we must accept the fact that the outcome we are looking for is conditional: According To His Will.
3. Let’s look at how Jesus works, but let’s do it in reverse order, kind of the way we wish it worked
4. Open your Bible to John 14.12-14 (wait for everyone to get there or print it out)
a. Start at 14
“If you ask anything in My name, I will do it.”
i. Jesus promised to give us anything we want.
ii. Shall we compile a list?
a. $20,000,000 to retire on.
b. A Gulfstream biz jet to travel in.
1. Lowest price $495,000
2. Highest price $49.5 M
c. A 1968 Shelby Mustang GT KR 500 to ride around in while at home.
1. Lowest $80K
2. Highest $150K
b. While you are compiling your list, let’s add verse 13.
“And whatever you ask in My name, that I will do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son.
i. Okay, so everything I ask for has to glorify the Father through the Son?
ii. So, I guess having $20,000,000 to spend on me for retirement doesn’t glorify the Father through the Son?
iii. Neither does the Gulfstream or the Mustang.
c. While we are mulling this over, let’s add verse 12.
“Most assuredly, I say to you, he who believes in Me, the works that I do he will do also; and greater works than these he will do, because I go to My Father.
B. Confident In Jesus While We Work The Work
1. So if we return the words of Jesus into the correct order we find the following:
a. We are here to work the works of Jesus because He went back to the Father.
b. While busily employed in said endeavors, we are to ask for what we need so that the Father may be glorified through the Son.
c. Jesus repeats himself to verify the oral contract, ““If you ask anything in My name, I will do it.”
2. Folks we so know this:
a. Prayer is a tool!
b. But it is a tool to be used to advance the Kingdom of God.
c. It is not a tool to pry stuff away from God to use for ourselves!
3. God is not:
a. A doddering grandfather doling out our heart’s desires to prove who He is.
b. Neither is He a piñata to be jostled at our will for his blessings to rain down.
C. Application To The Church
1. The confidence we have in Jesus is conditional on following His will.
2. Surely if Jesus was willing to follow the Father’s will and endure death on the cross, so too should we be willing to following our Savior’s will!
3. Whether we pray in his will or out of his will – He hears us.
4. But isn’t there a preferred position here?
II. Confidence In His Answer 15*
*Alfred Barnes (1996). Barnes' Notes. Grand Rapids, Michigan: Baker.
15 And if we know that He hears us, whatever we ask, we know that we have the petitions that we have asked of Him.
A. We Have the Perfect Assurance That He Hears Us At All Times. 15a
1. John assures us of the truth of this doctrine – God hears prayers.
2. Though we may not see an immediate answer, we have the utmost confidence that we have not been disregarded.
3. That our prayers will be answered in the best way to promote our good.
4. God may chose a different way to answer our prayers than the way we asked.
5. But the thing we should most take away from this section is not the fickleness of mankind, but the faithfulness of God!
B. We Have the Perfect Assurance That He Answers in His Time. 15a
1. The prayer may relate to something future, such as…
a. Protection on a trip
b. Restoration of health
c. The safe return of a prodigal.
d. The salvation of a loved one.
e. All of which are future and which cannot be expected to be allowed at once.
2. Answer to prayer is sometimes delayed, though ultimately granted.
a. There may be reasons why the answer should be deferred, and the promise is not that it shall be immediate.
b. The delay may arise from such causes as these: